Cyprus Heatwave

Here are some steps to be taken for the prevention of unnecessary health hazards due to the ongoing heatwave.

1. Avoid exposure to direct sunlight. Find shelter in shady and cool places. Prefer light colored clothing with an open neck and cover your head (use a hat, umbrella etc).

2. Avoid heavy physical work, particularly in place with high temperatures, humidity and direct sun.

3. Pay special attention to your nutrition:

• Drink plenty of fluids, preferably water and natural juices.

• Avoid alcoholic beverages.

• Have a low-calorie diet that includes fruits and vegetables of all kinds.

• Reduce fat intake

4. Have a bath or shower at regular intervals.

5. Infants and children to dress light. Especially for infants is preferable that the hands and feet are free and not wrapped in diapers. When it is too hot feed infants not only with milk but with other liquids such as water, juice etc.

6. More attention should be paid to the so-called high-risk groups which are:

• All persons aged 65 years

• All individuals with chronic diseases such as heart, kidney, lung, liver diseases, diabetes etc.

• All persons of pure medical condition taking medications for chronic diseases, such as with diuretics, anticholinergic, psychiatric drugs, Hormonal (including insulin and antidiuretic tablets). Especially during high temperatures, you should consult your doctor about any changes in you dosages.

Heat Stroke Symptoms

When the temperature exceeds certain limits tolerated by the human body, in conjunction with some other factors (moisture, reduced air, etc.), pathological conditions is caused with varying degrees of severity, which can lead to coma and death. Initial symptoms may include: a strong headache, weakness, and feeling of pain, fainting, falling blood pressure, nausea, vomiting, and palpitations. The syndrome of heat stroke is manifested by increased body temperature, convulsions, vomiting and diarrhea, abnormal blood clotting and unsent sweat. It may even cause myocardial infarction, followed by coma and death.

Treatment of people who have these symptoms when the ambient temperature is high should preferably be done in hospitals, but initially, first aid should be applied. Measures to reduce body temperature should be directly applied: Remove excess clothing, apply ice packs or cold compresses to the neck, armpits and groin, soaking in a bathtub with cold water, etc.